Winnipeg, MB

Concrete Levelling For Driveways

Driveway Concrete Levelling

When it comes to first impressions, driveways are often at the top of the list for residential properties. From driving home, shovelling snow, or even parking the car in the garage, driveways play a role in a person’s everyday life. 


There are two primary reasons as to why a driveway will settle. The first is when the water and septic lines are beneath the driveway. Normally, these utilities are 7 to 10 feet below the driveway and are backfilled with dirt. In this case, one half of the driveway is often set over the utility lines making it “disturbed” soil, and the other half over the then “undisturbed” soil. When the lines are backfilled, the soil is almost never compacted back to its original density. Generally, the “chunks” of soil will be much larger if the soil was wet or frozen when the home was backfilled than if it were done with dirt or sand. In drier years, these “chunks” can be broken down by trees or vegetation that dry them out and cause settling where initially excavated. When this happens, the soil will settle and form voids underneath the concrete, which reduces the slab’s support. If not addressed soon enough, the concrete slab will start to crack and break, and the slab will eventually fall until it can support the weight of the driveway and vehicles. 
The second reason, is when the home’s foundation is adjacent to the driveway. When the backfill against the foundation wall starts to settle, the metal dowels drilled into the foundation wall are, in many cases, the only thing holding the driveway up. If the void becomes too big for these dowels to support the weight (or if the dowels fail) the slab will start to settle, crack and fall. This poses a risk to your home’s foundation due to water getting under the slab and putting significant pressure on the foundation wall. While one of the major functions of your driveway is to keep water away from the home, this settling can bring abnormal amounts of water towards your foundation. 
Finally, driveways act as walkways. When cracks occur, they not only impact your driveway’s appearance but are also hazardous for people. In the winter, they can cause great difficulties for the person removing snow or the equipment they are using. If maintaining the value of your home is important to you, driveway levelling should be at the top of the list. After all, first impressions have a major influence on the minds of all home buyers.